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seekinghim45

Are mods on vacation?

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There are at least three threads here that I cannot believe have not been moderated yet!  People are being downright mean.  I've reported a couple of posts, but I've gotten no response.  Is it just me, or do people seem to be getting ruder?

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I think I’ve reported a post one time in four+ years. Maybe sensitivity has increased, or the overall climate has changed for the worse, or mods are letting folks hash things out between themselves. We’re all adults. Mostly, I think we can muddle though. 

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No clues about mods but I have been on this forum for 15+ years and there is a definite shift to ignoring internet etiquette - or perhaps "etiquette" does not exist anymore. Direct attacks on a person are the norm with some posters rather than focusing on the issue / topic. I feel it prevents or stops true dialog and discussion but sadly, have come to expect it rather than be dismayed by it.

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Mods will respond if people report. In general, I don't report (there have been some exceptions) because I'd rather err on the side of free speech. For example, I was explicitly called a gendered slur in a recent thread, but I didn't bother to report it. Who cares ? In some ways I'd rather it stand. It doesn't reflect on me, it reflects on the person who likes to use slurs.

I suggest you report threads/posts if you feel they are crossing a line.

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I've reported a few lately. Gutter language, slurs of many kinds, political free-for-alls and grudge matches - a little too wild west for me.

Not to mention the trolling. So much trolling.

My theory is that the mods have decided they don't get paid enough to police this sort of thing, and have moved on to more productive use of their own time. (I don't blame them, do you?)

This mirrors the state of IRL volunteering, something with which I have extensive experience. I've always been a volunteer, I married a confirmed volunteer, we raised volunteers.

IRL, the volunteers of the world (myself and my family included) have rather suddenly got tired of assisting or organizing rude people who aren't contributing anything to the activity. 

We are doing a lot less work for free. We still don't mind the work, but if we also have to babysit childish adults and beg them to be decent and/or finish what they'd promised to do, that's gonna cost somebody.

Signs of the (uncivil) times. If we aren't willing to interact like decent people here, we've got two options:

Chip into a fund for SWB to hire mods to sort the drivel and dreck, because why would anyone do it for less than good pay, or watch more decent people drift away.

 

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The rules seem to have changed.  I reported a post that was clearly against the old board rules, but the mods let it stand. 

Agree, people are drifting away. Vigorous use of ad hominems, straw men, etc have that effect.

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Are you all seriously forgetting the threads of a few years ago around marriage equality ? Or the atheist threads ? I think there's a bit of rewriting of history in this vision of board past as some civilized place. 

People drifted away during the shut down. Number dropped then and haven't picked up since.

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42 minutes ago, StellaM said:

Are you all seriously forgetting the threads of a few years ago around marriage equality ? Or the atheist threads ? I think there's a bit of rewriting of history in this vision of board past as some civilized place. 

People drifted away during the shut down. Number dropped then and haven't picked up since.

 

No?

I was here for all of that. And I remember why we had the now defunct "no politics" rule.

What was different was that mods would shut down name calling, grudge matches, and over the top profanity or vulgarity.

I'm saying the concentration has changed - the problems are liable to arise and fester in absolutely any topic now. Maybe the board shift affected the ratio beyond redemption (jerks/trolls:normal folk and old friends), and meanwhile, no mods in sight.

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49 minutes ago, StellaM said:

Are you all seriously forgetting the threads of a few years ago around marriage equality ? Or the atheist threads ? I think there's a bit of rewriting of history in this vision of board past as some civilized place. 

People drifted away during the shut down. Number dropped then and haven't picked up since.

 

Also, perhaps because some of us realized how much more productive we are without spending a lot of time here...I sure was but for now still here.  ?

ETA: I do agree that a few folks may have "drifted off" because there are fewer good, productive and constructive discussions nowadays. A lot of times threads quickly deteriorate into ad hominem attacks, etc.

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2 minutes ago, Liz CA said:

 

Also, perhaps because some of us realized how much more productive we are without spending a lot of time here...I sure was but for now still here.  ?

Yes, and also lots of people didn't like the new look, found it hard to read etc.

The attrition maps pretty clearly onto the changeover.

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22 minutes ago, Liz CA said:

 

Also, perhaps because some of us realized how much more productive we are without spending a lot of time here...I sure was but for now still here.  ?

ETA: I do agree that a few folks may have "drifted off" because there are fewer good, productive and constructive discussions nowadays. A lot of times threads quickly deteriorate into ad hominem attacks, etc.

I feel that I notice this a lot. I also notice perfectly worthwhile discussions dropping out after eight or so replies. I don’t know why that is. 

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Just now, Quill said:

I feel that I notice this a lot. I also notice perfectly worthwhile discussions dropping out after eight or so replies. I don’t know why that is. 

 

There just aren't as many people here.

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I also think the social groups are “stealing” good discussions that would otherwise have been posted here. 

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14 minutes ago, Quill said:

I also think the social groups are “stealing” good discussions that would otherwise have been posted here. 

Yep. 

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You have fewer mods than you used to, because several of us got demoted as a side effect of the Boardpocalypse.

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4 minutes ago, Rosie_0801 said:

You have fewer mods than you used to, because several of us got demoted as a side effect of the Boardpocalypse.

 

Seriously?  Can't they add them back?

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5 minutes ago, Rosie_0801 said:

You have fewer mods than you used to, because several of us got demoted as a side effect of the Boardpocalypse.

 

I thought it was very nice of you to mop up after the spammers from your side of the world, but I'd hate to think you should deal with general nastiness as a hobby. 

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4 minutes ago, DawnM said:

 

Seriously?  Can't they add them back?

 

Some of us have been told we've been reinstated, but we haven't mod abilities, so I'm assuming there's some kind of bug. *shrug*

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45 minutes ago, Quill said:

I also think the social groups are “stealing” good discussions that would otherwise have been posted here. 

 

I had not thought of this. Perhaps I should be more in tune with certain social groups to participate in discussions. The social groups are sort of an assembly of people presumably interested in the same subject and hopefully committed to discussing things civilly. I forget to check them even though I asked to be added to a few.

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28 minutes ago, Rosie_0801 said:

You have fewer mods than you used to, because several of us got demoted as a side effect of the Boardpocalypse.

 

Ack. What was the boardpocalypse? The upgrade? I am clueless.

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Just now, Liz CA said:

 

Ack. What was the boardpocalypse? The upgrade? I am clueless.

 

Yep.

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Just now, Liz CA said:

 

I had not thought of this. Perhaps I should be more in tune with certain social groups to participate in discussions. The social groups are sort of an assembly of people presumably interested in the same subject and hopefully committed to discussing things civilly. I forget to check them even though I asked to be added to a few.

I personally find the social groups format very awkward since the board change. It may be that I am doing something wrong, but it doesn’t make sense to me. Actually getting to mine is even a bit convoluted and I find myself unmotivated to go back and forth from Chat to particular SGs. 

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1 minute ago, Quill said:

I personally find the social groups format very awkward since the board change. It may be that I am doing something wrong, but it doesn’t make sense to me. Actually getting to mine is even a bit convoluted and I find myself unmotivated to go back and forth from Chat to particular SGs. 

 

This is exactly why I don't even remember to look there. I come to the chat board but in order to get to the social groups I have quite a few extra clicks. In fact, I'd have to think how to do it since I don't think I have been there since the upgrade.

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1 hour ago, Liz CA said:

 

Also, perhaps because some of us realized how much more productive we are without spending a lot of time here...I sure was but for now still here.  ?

 

 

Yes, this. I suspect that some people were more active when they only had littles, and "school" was done in a couple of hours a day. As my children grow older and their schooling becomes more complex I find that I have less time for hanging out on the internet in general. And while I can't claim to have my finger on the pulse of the homeschooling community at large, I suspect that fewer people are joining a classical board than even a few years ago, to make up for those who are busier with homeschooling older kids. Elsewhere on the internet, this board seems to have a Lake Woebegone-esque reputation: the dads are PhDs, the moms are organized, and the children all learn three classical languages. Many of the new hsing families I meet want recommendations that are free, online, self-directed, and all-inclusive. The academically inclined families seem to be gravitating towards the secular Charlotte Mason-inspired curricula. And the rest are unschoolers and think that requiring kids to study constitutes child abuse. Just kidding, kind of. I think that I only know one classical hs family locally, and a few who use CC halfheartedly but don't necessarily buy into the benefits of classical education. And last but not least, forums such as this are kind of an old fashioned platform. The facebook hs groups are so busy that I can't even pretend to keep up, 

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Rosie's right: with the board change we went from 4 volunteer moderators in 4 different time zones to two mods in two time zones. I'm trying to keep up with the spam as is the other moderator, but there are only so many hours in a day. 

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6 minutes ago, Ethel Mertz said:

Rosie's right: with the board change we went from 4 volunteer moderators in 4 different time zones to two mods in two time zones. I'm trying to keep up with the spam as is the other moderator, but there are only so many hours in a day. 

 

If you guys are all volunteers, why would they not reinstate a few more providing people are still willing to do it?

So...those nightly SPAM posts I reported a few weeks ago came to you...thank you for doing this!

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55 minutes ago, Quill said:

I personally find the social groups format very awkward since the board change. It may be that I am doing something wrong, but it doesn’t make sense to me. Actually getting to mine is even a bit convoluted and I find myself unmotivated to go back and forth from Chat to particular SGs. 

 The change has defintely affected my motivation too. Someone who knows about design would know, but it seems like there are too many steps now ? Too many clicks ?

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8 hours ago, Quill said:

I personally find the social groups format very awkward since the board change. It may be that I am doing something wrong, but it doesn’t make sense to me. Actually getting to mine is even a bit convoluted and I find myself unmotivated to go back and forth from Chat to particular SGs. 

Agree that it's way too difficult to get to the social groups now. I ended up bookmarking the direct link for the main group I participate in. So I go to it like a totally different site than this one. 

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What are people thinking of when they say they are seeing political posts?  I haven't seen anything that really strikes me as political.

I find it more clicks to get to discussion groups as well and so I don't often.  Though I finally figured out how to make it show the threads rather tan most recent posts which is easier.

I am finding the tone kind of less fruitful - I felt like there are few people willing or interested in talking about the topics in a rational way, breaking them down to talk about what is really being said. This might just reflect fewer people being here.

I think it is true that fewer people are becoming interested in classical homeschooling, though I'd have included CM as well.  I kind of feel like culturally, the younger parents don't see any kind of intellectual tradition as important.  Actually, a lot of the time I am not sure if they know it's a thing or care if they find out.

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@Bluegoat, can you explain how to make it show the threads in the SGs? Although I am still unmotivated to click through to visit them.

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1 hour ago, Quill said:

@Bluegoat, can you explain how to make it show the threads in the SGs? Although I am still unmotivated to click through to visit them.

 

Yes, so when you get to the club, if you look up toward the top of the page there are tabs like the top of a file folder.  One of them says "topics" so just click it and it moves over to topic view.

 

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I don't think it's just redesign.  The boards are always more quiet in the summer.

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14 hours ago, Tibbie Dunbar said:

I've reported a few lately. Gutter language, slurs of many kinds, political free-for-alls and grudge matches - a little too wild west for me.

Not to mention the trolling. So much trolling.

My theory is that the mods have decided they don't get paid enough to police this sort of thing, and have moved on to more productive use of their own time. (I don't blame them, do you?)

This mirrors the state of IRL volunteering, something with which I have extensive experience. I've always been a volunteer, I married a confirmed volunteer, we raised volunteers.

IRL, the volunteers of the world (myself and my family included) have rather suddenly got tired of assisting or organizing rude people who aren't contributing anything to the activity. 

We are doing a lot less work for free. We still don't mind the work, but if we also have to babysit childish adults and beg them to be decent and/or finish what they'd promised to do, that's gonna cost somebody.

Signs of the (uncivil) times. If we aren't willing to interact like decent people here, we've got two options:

Chip into a fund for SWB to hire mods to sort the drivel and dreck, because why would anyone do it for less than good pay, or watch more decent people drift away.

 



Pretty much.

I'm seeing a general lack of respect all around, including political posts which everyone knows to keep outta here.

Ugh.

I long for the days when TWTM was a homeschooling board.

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10 hours ago, Liz CA said:

 

If you guys are all volunteers, why would they not reinstate a few more providing people are still willing to do it?

So...those nightly SPAM posts I reported a few weeks ago came to you...thank you for doing this!

 

RE number of mods: I think it's more of a glitch than anything else. We're working on it.

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I thought political posts were hardly ever seen anymore since there was a Politics group ? Seems to me like there's a lot less political arguing.

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2 minutes ago, StellaM said:

I thought political posts were hardly ever seen anymore since there was a Politics group ? Seems to me like there's a lot less political arguing.

 

Me too, I'm really curious about what people mean.

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1 minute ago, Bluegoat said:

 

Me too, I'm really curious about what people mean.

Maybe more like 'contentious issues' ? But we always used to have those, and plenty of 'em.

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14 hours ago, Tibbie Dunbar said:

 

This mirrors the state of IRL volunteering, something with which I have extensive experience. I've always been a volunteer, I married a confirmed volunteer, we raised volunteers.

IRL, the volunteers of the world (myself and my family included) have rather suddenly got tired of assisting or organizing rude people who aren't contributing anything to the activity. 

We are doing a lot less work for free. We still don't mind the work, but if we also have to babysit childish adults and beg them to be decent and/or finish what they'd promised to do, that's gonna cost somebody.

 

 

I'm seeing that here too. People that were willing to plant the extra row, give up several evenings to help out in the community have realized they are being taken advantage of.  The recipients have no intention of improving their lot, just gathering more handouts. And some are quite militant that they deserve to displace others based on their 'neediness'; others who are both working to improve their lot and achieving success.  And since we now have, for the first time in a decade, help wanted signs for unskilled labor...the volunteers are taking a well earned break...let the chips fall where they may.

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Thinking about the good old days made me remember albeto. I wonder where albeto is these days. Last I remember she was recovering from a motorbike accident and raising funds for orphans ??

Anyone keep in touch ? Anyone know how she's doing ? She was one dogged lady.

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I think what people are reacting to is tone, rather than content. Slurs, rash judgement, etc., seem not to be being deleted as frequently. Back on the old board I remember SWB would sometimes totally delete threads that had gotten out of control, and occasionally even scold the participants. Haven't seen that happen once since the migration, and I think I've been on the board more since then. I don't know that "reasoned debate" in the Socratic ideal ever truly existed here, but it certainly seems like the environment is less conducive to it than it once was.

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30 minutes ago, BlsdMama said:

I long for the days when TWTM was a homeschooling board.

What am I missing?  Most of the sub-forums are still focused on homeschooling.  

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11 hours ago, mellifera33 said:

I suspect that fewer people are joining a classical board than even a few years ago, to make up for those who are busier with homeschooling older kids... And last but not least, forums such as this are kind of an old fashioned platform.

Speaking as a younger millennial-generation person, I get the sense that a lot of people my age are sick of internet-fighting. People talk about the dangers of retreating into the "echo chamber" where we only hear what we want to hear... There's a reason for that! It's because nobody on the internet is willing to give the benefit of the doubt to the person on the other side of the screen.

My "I will fight no more forever" moment came via FB about 3 years ago. I shared a blog post that I agreed with, which had spiritual content but which I did not think was remotely controversial. An atheist relative of mine, who is of my mom's generation and therefore should know better, took offense at a certain phrase that was used in the post: something like "Protestants, Muslims, Hindus, and all people of good will." This is a common Catholic expression for people who do not share the Catholic faith, but who have the "good will" to work together with Catholics on common causes. The relative was furious that "only theists are regarded as having good will." I explained the meaning of the term. I was ignored. Over the next 12 hours or so, there was wall of text after wall of text about how stupid and pointless this blog post was, how ill-intentioned the author and I must be to share such offensive beliefs in public, etc. I did my best to stay polite and counter each "claim" that I was able to discern from the fire hose. It wasn't helpful. Everything I said was taken out of context and twisted to mean things I never intended. Eventually I gave up, and this relative and I have not spoken since. It completely turned me off of internet conversation on anything that I find important. I'll talk to people IRL, because at least to my face they are more likely to be polite. But that experience really drove home to me the impossibility of changing anyone's mind on the internet. It's a place for bullying, or cat videos. I choose cats.

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America seems to me to be a more contentious place in general, so I'm not surprised by the spill over here at TWTM. I wonder if that's happening in other parts of the English speaking world too?  As much? Any of our non-American posters what to chime in about that?

I'm trying to stick to no more than 3-4 replies per topic maximum because really, after that, it's just beating a dead horse, but temptation is strong sometimes.   Then I try to move on to something else and remind myself that people are going to disagree with me no matter what, and that's perfectly OK, so I don't let it bother me that people will likely respond in disagreement to my last reply.  That's just life. No matter what position I take on any given topic, literally billions of people on the planet disagree with me.  It's not my job to convince any of them otherwise.

Being a moderator is a thankless job.  Either people think you're not doing enough to limit some of people they disagree with, or they're doing too much to limit free speech.  Personally, I think babysitting adults is pissing in the wind, but I get that it's SWB's board and she can run it however she wants. She's opted for moderators.  So be it. No one can satisfy everyone's definition of "civil" and "polite", so there will always be people reacting with outrage to what others consider perfectly acceptable. Meh. I've never reported anything but spam. I have no illusions about the ways some people post on the internet.  If it bothered me would stay off internet websites that allow replies or I wouldn't read replies.

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Times have changed.  I remember sitting in the dorm at college and actually discussing topics not everyone agreed on.  I mean an actual exchange of ideas and debate, not name calling and inappropriate language.  We learned so much from each other and we were able to refine our positions and beliefs through information exchange.  At the end of the day, we were friends and classmates even though we all had different opinions.  

Now it seems that most any discussion breaks down into name calling and insults.  

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4 minutes ago, HollyDay said:

Times have changed.  I remember sitting in the dorm at college and actually discussing topics not everyone agreed on.  I mean an actual exchange of ideas and debate, not name calling and inappropriate language.  We learned so much from each other and we were able to refine our positions and beliefs through information exchange.  At the end of the day, we were friends and classmates even though we all had different opinions.  

Now it seems that most any discussion breaks down into name calling and insults.  

Yep. I was a freshman in college 10 years ago this fall and I had generally-positive dorm debate experiences like you describe. I guess the change must have been in the wind back then, but it's amazing how quickly it happened.

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I read the boards sorted by Unread and my social groups come up in that list.  So, I don't have to navigate to the social groups to see what's going on there.  IF I did, I'd probably have no idea.

 

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1 hour ago, HollyDay said:

Times have changed.  I remember sitting in the dorm at college and actually discussing topics not everyone agreed on.  I mean an actual exchange of ideas and debate, not name calling and inappropriate language.  We learned so much from each other and we were able to refine our positions and beliefs through information exchange.  At the end of the day, we were friends and classmates even though we all had different opinions.  

Now it seems that most any discussion breaks down into name calling and insults.  

Memories like this are my favorite memories of my college years. 

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13 hours ago, Liz CA said:

 

This is exactly why I don't even remember to look there. I come to the chat board but in order to get to the social groups I have quite a few extra clicks. In fact, I'd have to think how to do it since I don't think I have been there since the upgrade.

 

I just saved a new link directly to the club so I didn't have to go through the clicks every time.  I have one link for Chat, another for the Club, etc.  Navigating from within the site is extremely inconvenient and I probably wouldn't do it otherwise.  (Link, shortcut, bookmark, whatever you want to call it.)

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2 hours ago, egao_gakari said:

Yep. I was a freshman in college 10 years ago this fall and I had generally-positive dorm debate experiences like you describe. I guess the change must have been in the wind back then, but it's amazing how quickly it happened.

My college freshman says it's still that way and comments often about how polite everyone is on campus.  Of course, dc attends a university with roughly equal numbers of liberals and conservatives, so there's a certain amount of pressure to be polite.

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